The leopard seal (Hydrurga leptonyx) is a species of seal found in oceans outside Antarctica.
This seal is distinguished by spots all around their grey body, especially on their whitish throat region. They are 8-11 feet in length, and weigh 450-1,300 pounds. Females are slightly larger than males.
Leopard seals inhabit icy waters, often hauling out on land or ice. They are top predators in the Antarctic ecosystem. They often prey on other seals, such as crabeater and fur seals, but the bulk of their diet consists of krill. They may also consume penguins, fish, and other marine life.
At 3 or 4 years of age, leopard seals begin to reproduce. They are likely polygynous and mate in the water from November to February. They give birth to a single young after 11 months of gestation.
Leopard seals are listed as “least concern” by the IUCN, due to its widespread range and large population.